Skeptics with a K: Episode #175 – Part One

Microscopes, ninja turtles, bags of flour, and charging mats. Plus orbs of energy, lego ghosts, HIV, and cosmic ordering. Invisible to the naked eye, it’s Skeptics with a K. Part Two coming soon!

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  1. #1 by Cappy Charlie on June 17, 2016 - 21:50

    The phrase “charge up your glow in the dark Lego ghost testicles to teabag Noël Edmonds with” really needs to enter popular parlance.

  2. #2 by Chris on June 18, 2016 - 07:32

    Just a comment that the Nature podcast revealed sympathies to Marsh’s stance the UK in the EU debate (it is the part where they talk about Switzerland), plus my sincere condolences that your island has suffered a death from an extremest.

    Though, at least he had to make his own weapon from instructions he got on the internets, while someone in Florida just had to buy a weapon of massacre. Thanks NRA.

    In the next two weeks I sense some more heated rhetoric, possibly from someone connected to Texas. Just a wild guess, I could be wrong. In every respect, I would agree.

    (by the way, I live in the part of my country plagued by “patriots”, or considering what they did in a wild life sanctuary “pooptriots.” One of the best ways I have found to follow the “Oregon Occupation by Idiots” is this twitter feed, mostly due to his “court illustrations”: )

  3. #3 by Declan on June 18, 2016 - 13:44

    I once suffered a hydrocele, whereby the covering around my left testicle filled with water. The first test for this is holding a torch against it so see if the oversized gonad illuminates which it wouldn’t do if the swelling was caused by a solid matter.

    Thankfully, my enlarged ball lit up like a fucking Christmas tree. While waiting on a proper scan I did take comfort that the ailment was either a harmless hydrocele or a glowing orb of energy containing some sort of representation of Noel Edmunds’ dead parents.

  4. #4 by Muz on June 19, 2016 - 09:07

    “Microscope Skepticism” seems to be a weird outgrowth of AIDS denialism. There was a bloke on the League of Nerds ages back for whom the inability to ‘see’ HIV was a big plank of his disbelief in the virus. In that case the problem was that the supposed pictures of HIV weren’t visible light but weird beams whose behaviour was interpreted by a computer. Therefore it’s a fanciful construction and not actually witnessing the virus (some of the stuff he said about sensors and computers made me want to ask if he thought regular digital photography was ‘real’).

    It’s not that I’ve done the in-depth on this, but seems like a result of AIDS denialists ever retreating burden of proof.
    They say no one knows what does this then scientists reply that they think it’s this virus.
    They say how do they know – scientists say they’ve inferred its existence from tests and looking at cells and stuff.
    Then they say well people don’t know that it’s real then it’s just an inference and we can’t act on an inference, it’s not as though anyone can show a picture of HIV.
    Some time later scientists manage to image HIV so they say well is that a picture really? Scientists then say it’s a SEM or STM image and explain that, so they say “Oh. so not a picture then? you can’t just take a picture of it then can you?”. And so it goes.

    This next step back per the article in the show seems almost inevitable, even in anticipation of an actual optical or semi-optical image of HIV turning up (not that a purely optical image is possible). And in the process they move vast swathes of knowledge into the doubtful or unknowable and readily dismissable as far as they are concerned. I doubt they mean to do this but, as we’ve heard, that’s pretty much what happens.

    On top of that I don’t think they realise this or mean for it to happen necessarily, but they’re moving to a purely sensory and essentially faith based conception of reality like that of some religious fundamentalists and presuppositionalists. All to hang on to the idea that AIDS isn’t real.

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